Document 83426

Wednesday, May 14, 2014
Corvallis Gazette-Times, Corvallis, Ore.
f you’ve hit the prime
age of 21 but haven’t
reached 40, don’t hang
out with folks in their
senior years, or simply
don’t go places where classic
cocktails are celebrated, then
there’s a strong chance that
the Ramos Gin Fizz has not
made it onto your brunch
menu radar.
That would be your loss.
The Ramos Gin Fizz is hands
down the perfect brunch
beverage. First of all, it’s got
that wonderful word in there.
Fizz. As in, Hello! Time to
wake up and enjoy the rest of
the day. And I’m here to help
ease you into it, with my
creamy, frothy, goes-downeasy personality. Delivered
in a tall and
Collins glass,
dripping with
dewy moisture on the
JAN ROBERTS- outside, and a
Food For Thought dynamic that
has you gently
tethered to the experience
from the very first sip, you’ll
never forget the first time.
Presented during a 21st
birthday brunch in my honor
and hosted by my dear god
parents, Ralph and Louise,
that’s exactly what I remember. The venue was the
restaurant veranda at the Alta
Mira Hotel, overlooking San
Francisco Bay. Intoxicating
enough I would say. But that
exquisite Ramos Gin Fizz was
the cherry on top.“Oh my
gosh,” I said.“What is this
wonderful drink?”
The Ramos Gin Fizz is
used to such fuss.
Seattle based cocktail afficionado and writer Paul
Clarke is equally passionate
about the RGF. In his entertaining blog, The Cocktail
Chronicles (cocktailchroni he writes:
“With its long list of ingredients — including cream
and raw egg white, plus the
difficult-to-find orange
flower water — and the physical effort involved in its mixing — most bar manuals recommend it be shaken vigorously for anywhere between
two and 12 minutes — the
Ramos Gin Fizz harks back to
a day before instant messaging — heck, before telephones. Given the strikes
against this drink, one could
be forgiven the notion that
the Ramos Gin Fizz is perpetually perched at the edge
of the abyss, ready to follow
other libations of its vintage,
one of the most appropriate
drinks to complement your
savory brunch items is the
Bloody Mary. But the ones to
follow are. They’re all from
my favorite go-to book on
the subject,“The Ultimate
Guide To Pitcher Drinks —
Cool Cocktails for a Crowd,”
by Sharon Tyler Herbst.
My one tip to pass along is
the idea that you don’t have
to store your prepared pitcher drinks in a pitcher until the
party begins.
I always pour the mixture
into an empty 1.5 liter plastic
water bottle with a screw-on
cap so you can tuck the mixture into any corner of your
refrigerator while it’s chilling.
Ramos Gin Fizz
The Ramos Gin Fizz is an ideal brunch beverage. For more recipes,
see this story at
such as the sherry cobbler
and the brandy flip, into the
realm of deceased and nearforgotten cocktails, documented only in dusty bar
manuals and recalled only as
a mixological oddity.”
But that’s just not the
case, says Clark. The drink’s
creator, Henry C. Ramos,
“deserves a big star on the
Cocktail Walk of Fame. The
Ramos Gin Fizz is a luxurious
drink: The prolonged shaking aerates the cream and egg
white and creates a mix of
silky texture, and the combination of juices and botanicals makes for a complex layer of flavor.”
Ramos presented this
drink to an appreciative public in 1888, at his Imperial
Cabinet Saloon, located on
the corner of Fravier and
Carondelet streets in New
Orleans. Nineteen years later,
its following grew when
Ramos purchased another
bar, The Stag, and added the
cocktail to its menu. During
Carnival and Mardi Gras,
there would be upward of 35
shaker boys behind the bar,
practically shaking their
arms off and still barely
keeping up with the demand.
And even though you will
find plenty of variations on
the Gin Fizz that encourage
mixing in a blender, that’s
just not the route I’m willing
to take when pursuing this
drink in its purest form. You
see, it’s the shaking action
and reaction between the
cream, egg whites and
cracked ice that aerates the
mixture just enough to produce its classic frothy character. So suck it up. Your biceps will thank you in the
long run.
Because of the physical effort involved with a single
drink, you may want to limit
your Ramos Gin Fizz preparations to intimate brunch
gatherings. For larger midday gatherings — and lacking
a behind-the-bar line-up of
“shaker boys” — you may
want to go the route of premixed beverages. Pitcher
drinks, if you will. I thought it
fitting to include a few recipes
from this genre as well.
Mixing up a batch in the
pre-party phase is an effortless and stylish way to entertain and still have fun at your
own party. After all, as I’ve
already said, making individual cocktails like the Ramos
Gin Fizz takes time and focus.
Pitcher drinks don’t have
to be fruit based. After all,
Makes 1 6-ounce serving (and
served in a 10- or 12-ounce
Collins glass
This is an authentic recipe.
You’ll need a cocktail shaker and
plenty of cracked ice. Choose a
dry gin rather than an herbal
styled gin. If you want a wonderful locally produced gin, consider
Corvallis based Vivacity Spirit’s
creation, Baker’s Gin. Other classic dry gins include Bombay Sapphire, Tanqueray, Beefeater, Gordon’s and Seagrams.
/4 cup (2 ounces) gin
2 tablespoons (1 ounce)
heavy cream
1 large egg white
1 tablespoon fresh lemon
1 tablespoon fresh lime
1 tablespoon simple syrup
4 drops orange blossom water (see note below)
• Club soda, chilled
Combine the gin, heavy cream,
egg white, lemon juice, lime juice,
simple syrup and orange blossom water in a cocktail shaker.
Add a generous amount (about 1
heaping cup) of cracked ice, replace the lid, wrap the shaker in a
towel and shake vigorously for at
least two minutes, preferably four
to five! Strain into a chilled 10- or
12-ounce Collins glass, and add
chilled club soda until an inch
from the top, then wait for the
foam to decide how high it’s going before topping off again with
a bit more soda.
My Tip: It’s always a good idea
to store the shaker in the freezer
because this drink has to be
shaken for such a long time.
Note on orange blossom water: also known as orange flower
water. Kind of hard to find, but locally, it’s available at the Corvallis
Liquor stores (Washington Avenue and Ninth Street and Circle
Boulevard), and sometimes at
Market of Choice (they seem to
run out of it fairly frequently —
but at least they carry it!)
Source: Recipe adapted from, by Paul
A Pitcher of Ramos Fizz
Makes ten 6-ounce servings
Although not the authentic version (no egg white and no shaking), it works really well for multiple servings, as necessary for
serving a brunch crowd.
• One 750 ml bottle (25.4
ounces) gin
3 cups (24 ounces) heavy
/4 cup (6 ounces) fresh
lemon juice
/4 cup (6 ounces) fresh lime
2 tablespoons superfine
1 teaspoon orange flower
• Two 10-ounce bottles icycold seltzer water or club
• Garnish: 10 orange slices
Combine the gin, heavy cream,
lemon juice, lime juice, superfine
sugar, and orange flower water in
a pitcher that holds at least 90
ounces; stir vigorously. Cover and
refrigerate at least 4 hours.Just
before serving, slowly add the
seltzer water or club soda, tilting
the pitcher and pouring onto the
pitcher’s side to retain as much effervescence as possible. Stir gently to combine. Serve in 10-ounce
tall glasses or wineglasses; garnish each serving with an orange
slice, hooking it over the glass rim.
Source: Recipe adapted from
“Pitcher Drinks,” by Sharon Tyler
Sparkling Sangria
Makes about 10 8-ounce servings
/4 cup triple sec or other orange-flavored liqueur
/4 cup fresh orange juice
/2 cup brandy
/3 cup fresh lime juice
/2 cup (approximately) superfine sugar
• Two 750-ml bottles (50.8
ounces) sparkling wine or
Champagne (Brut or extra-dry), thoroughly
2 cups orange-flavored
sparkling water, thoroughly chilled
• Garnishes: 1 orange, 1
lemon, 2 limes, sliced
In a pitcher that holds at least 96
ounces (12 cups) combine the orange-flavored liqueur,with the orange juice,brandy,lime juice and
superfine sugar,stirring to dissolve.
Cover and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled,at least 4 hours or
overnight.When ready to serve,
slowly pour in the sparkling wine
(or Champagne) and the sparkling
water,tilting the pitcher and pouring onto the pitcher’s side to retain
as much effervescence as possible.
Stir gently to combine.Add fruit
slices.Fill 12-ounce wine glasses
two-thirds full with ice cubes; add
Sangria and a slice or two of fruit.
Source: Recipe adapted from
“Pitcher Drinks,” by Sharon Tyler
French Flirt
Makes twelve 6-ounce servings
This drink is perfect for daytime festivities, from brunches to
lunches to weddings — but then
again, it’s also a great aperitif.
The blend of passion fruit, black
raspberry and a kiss of ginger is
intensely exotic and just the thing
for special occasions. If you don’t
have tall champagne flutes, use
white wine glasses.
2 cups (16 ounces) Alize
Gold Passion liqueur or
other passion fruit liqueur
½ cup (4 ounces) Chambord
½ cup (2 ounces) Canton
Delicate Ginger Liqueur
• Two 750-ml. bottles (50.8
ounces) icy-cold brut
Champagne or sparkling
• Garnish: 12 fresh raspberries plus 12 small edible
flowers (optional)
Combine the Passion liqueur,
Chambord and ginger liqueur in a
pitcher that holds at least 80
ounces; stir well. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours. Just before serving, slowly add Champagne, tilting the pitcher and
pouring onto the pitcher’s side to
retain as much effervescence as
possible. Stir gently to combine.
Pour into 7-ounce flutes or
wineglasses; drop a raspberry
into each serving. If desired, float
an edible flower in each serving.
Source: Recipe from “Pitcher
Drinks,” by Sharon Tyler Herbst.
Jan Roberts-Dominguez is a
Corvallis food writer, artist, and
author of “Oregon Hazelnut
Country, the Food, the Drink, the
Spirit,” and four other cookbooks. Readers can contact her
by email at [email protected],
or find additional recipes and
food tips on her blog at
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